The Flames closed out the 2010 portion of their schedule in style with a three game winning streak last night, defeating the Colorado Avalanche in a 3-2 game that ended up being closer than it probably should have.
I don't have a whole lot to say about this one as I missed the game in its entirety due to a previous engagement, but by the looks of it things were pretty close with the exception of the middle frame, where the Flames did all their damage on the scoresheet, outshooting the Avs 11-7 in the period and narrowly edging them 23-21 overall. The home side outshot their visitors 20-14 at even strength and outscored them 3-1, as the only time special teams really factored into the game was on Colorado's shorthanded marker in the final frame.
The fourth line had a particularly strong night, with Tom Kostopoulos and Tim Jackman factoring in on two of Calgary's three goals, and finishing a combined +14 in scoring chance differential at EV. Their possession numbers weren't exactly amazing, but they weren't getting the same favourable treatment in terms of offensive zone faceoffs this time around, with each of Kostopoulos, Jackman, and Moss starting more often in the defensive and neutral zones. The Flames' top trio of Jarome Iginla, Olli Jokinen, and Alex Tanguay also outplayed their counterparts for the majority of this contest, finishing +14 in EV scoring chances and +24 in Corsi.
Last night's contest wasn't an overly offensive effort with no Flames player finishing with more than three shots on net, but the home side had a few bounces go their way as they often do when you're on a winning streak, and it was good enough against an Avs team that wasn't really on their game until it was nearly too late (otherwise known as "garbage time").
The Flames are back at it a mere few hours when they take on the Edmonton Oilers in the fourth installment of the Battle of Alberta, so stick around for tonight's Game Thread!
Hopefully everyone had a great New Year's Eve, and enjoy the Winter Classic if you're watching it. I know I will be!